Updated: October 16, 2023

19 Best British Business Books

Here is our list of the best British business books.

British business books are British-authored publications focusing on entrepreneurial stories and practical principles for businesspeople. Examples include Entrepreneur Revolution by Daniel Priestley and Lynda Gratton’s Redesigning Work. These books aim to provide entrepreneurial insights and strategies necessary to succeed in business.

These books are international business books that are similar to business books by women, business books by Black authors, business strategy books, and business history books.

This list includes:

  • British business management books
  • British business textbooks
  • business books by British authors

Let’s get started!

List of British business books

From Rise of the Youpreneur to Brand Brilliance, here is our list of the best business books by British authors.

1. Anyone Can Do It: My Story by Duncan Bannatyne

Duncan Bannatyne is a familiar face to British readers. He appeared on the BBC series Dragons’ Den from 2005 to 2015. On the show, he was an entertaining and frank business angel. In Anyone Can Do It, Bannatyne reveals that his personality in Dragons’ Den is not so different from reality.

The book’s premise is quite interesting. Bannatyne reads a book about a man who gets rich in five years, which inspires him to do the same. With a dry sense of humor and confidence, Duncan explains how he became “self-made.” He gives a surface-level understanding of strategies that drives high ROI.

Bannatyne went from an ice cream salesperson to a million-dollar business owner. His experience is an engaging story of grit, perseverance, and hope. Anyone Can Do It gives tips on leveraging legislation to grow your business. The book also discusses the skills you need to run a successful business. In addition, he gives a surface-level understanding of strategies that drives high ROI.

Notable quote: “Making £100 million is so easy anyone can do it. Few people believe me when I say that, but with this book, I hope to show that it’s true. Even people with no family connections, no money, and no education can do it: I know because I did.”

Get Anyone Can Do It.

2. Brand Brilliance: Elevate Your Brand, Enchant Your Audience by Fiona Humberstone

Brand Brilliance has grown in popularity to become one of the best business books by British authors. The book’s acclaim is thanks to Fiona Humberstone’s brilliant viewpoints. As a renowned brand expert, she explores the barebones tips for creating a brand from the ground up. She also tackles how to build a great brand with limited resources.

Brand Brilliance breaks down why customers choose certain brands. The book offers insights into how to create similar impressions on new customers. Humberstone discusses finding a niche, utilizing visual styles, and incorporating typography in branding.

Notable quote: “Creating a brilliant brand is about creating a business that plays to your strengths and feeds your unique passion. It’s about putting your focus on doing that thing that you do better than anyone else and celebrating it through everything you communicate.”

Read Brand Brilliance.

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3. Shoemaker: The Untold Story of the British Family Firm that Became a Global Brand by Joe Foster

Joe Foster’s tale of entrepreneurialism in Britain is an unlikely one. Foster left and formed Reebok after a quarrel with his family about their footwear business. He had to start from scratch because Adidas and Puma dominated the shoe industry. Still, Reebok fought its way from obscurity into the lap of success.

In Shoemaker, you will gain the mindset and determination needed to get a seat at the big table. This title is one of the best business books for entrepreneurs who dare to test the impossible.

Notable quote: “Genius doesn’t just rely on creativity, invention, and production. It also needs recognition. Without being recognized, you can’t be perceived as a genius.”

Get Shoemaker.

4. Like A Virgin: Secrets They Won’t Teach You at Business School by Richard Branson

Richard Branson is among the most influential British businesspeople. He founded Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Records, Virgin Media, and Virgin Galactic.

In Like A Virgin, Branson shares general business tips for entrepreneurs. One of his ingenious business strategies was licensing the Virgin brand to third parties. Licensing the brand gave him and his business a steady income stream without equity risk.

Beyond business advice, the author touches on the global financial crisis. The book is an attempt to share as many actionable tips as possible from the life of a successful businessman.

Notable quote: “Businesses are nothing more than a group of people, and they’re by far and away your biggest assets. In fact, in probably the majority of businesses your people are your product.”

Buy Like A Virgin.

5. Enter the Dragon: How I Transformed My Life and How You Can Too by Theo Paphitis

Enter the Dragon inspires professionals interested in entrepreneurship. Theo Paphitis shares his fascinating journey from humble beginnings to successful entrepreneurship. Paphitis’ story demonstrates the power of hard work, determination, and perseverance. In addition, he offers practical hints on starting, growing, and sustaining a business.

The author’s writing style is simple and easy to grasp. Personal anecdotes give the book an authentic touch. Entrepreneurs seeking motivation must read Enter the Dragon.

Notable quote: “There’s not much difference between a fantasist and a visionary. We all have dreams and without dreams in business, I don’t believe you can be successful. The trick is to turn them into reality.”

Read Enter the Dragon.

6. Rise of the Youpreneur: The Definitive Guide to Becoming the Go-To Leader in Your Industry and Building a Future-Proof Business by Chris Ducker

Chris Ducker’s Rise of the Youpreneur is a practical guide to developing a personal brand. The book also gives tips on becoming an industry leader in your business. Ducker provides readers with actionable steps to becoming a Youpreneur.

The book is easy to read and includes helpful case studies. Entrepreneurs can use this book to build solid personal brands and future-proof their businesses. Rise of the Youpreneur is a thorough guide that offers actionable strategies for developing a successful personal brand.

Notable quote: “One of the biggest mistakes I see entrepreneurs make is that they never figure out how to define their business. This can make it almost impossible to build a successful brand and, consequently, a profitable business over the long term.”

Buy Rise of the Youpreneur.

7. Twice As Hard: Navigating Black Stereotypes and Creating Space For Success by Opeyemi Sofoluke and Raphael Sofoluke

Twice As Hard is an enlightening and empowering book. Opeyemi and Raphael Sofoluke discuss the difficulties people of color face in the corporate world due to stereotypes and biases. The Sofolukes offer practical advice based on their experiences and those of other successful Black professionals.

The book comes in an easy-to-understand style that allows accessibility to readers of all backgrounds. Twice As Hard is a must read for professionals attempting to navigate race and identity issues in the workplace.

Notable quote: “The issue we find ourselves battling surrounds perception. People’s perception influences how they see us, subsequently playing a direct role in how our brand is interpreted.”

Get Twice As Hard.

8. The Undercover Economist by Tim Harford

The Undercover Economist explains how the world of business and finance works. This book deploys real-world examples and anecdotes to teach rare economic principles. Tim Harford takes readers on a journey through various aspects of the economy. He moves from supply and demand and price discrimination to globalization and outsourcing.

What makes this book unique is Harford’s ability to explain complex economic ideas to aspiring businesspeople. He presents valuable information with humor and wit. The Undercover Economist is an enjoyable and informative read for professionals learning about the British economy.

Notable quote: “Economics is in many ways just like engineering. It will tell you how things work and what is likely to happen if you change them.”

Get The Undercover Economist.

9. Fixing Britain: The Business of Reshaping Our Nation by Lord Digby Jones

Fixing Britain presents a unique perspective on Britain’s challenges. According to Lord Digby Jones, Britain is lagging behind in the global business race. The author posits that the failure of businesses to adapt contributes to the nation’s economic problems. The book offers the government and businesses solutions to work together to achieve a prosperous Britain.

Jones provides a clear vision for reshaping the nation’s future. The author’s solutions promise to keep Britain in the global race. In addition, the book provides insights into the reforms needed to uphold the status quo. This read is for professionals interested in the future of the UK’s economy. Fixing Britain is one of this age’s most practical British business textbooks.

Notable quote: “We don’t celebrate what we’re good at. We merely look inward and criticize all the time. The tragedy is that we have ceased to believe in ourselves.

Read Fixing Britain.

10. Entrepreneur Revolution: How to Develop your Entrepreneurial Mindset and Start a Business that Works by Daniel Priestley

Entrepreneur Revolution is an exciting and practical guide for prospective entrepreneurs. Priestley contends that the old career route of working for one firm for the rest of your life is no longer possible. Instead, the new era of entrepreneurship necessitates a different attitude and skill set.

He provides practical recommendations on how to cultivate an entrepreneurial attitude. Examples of this mindset include fostering a sense of purpose, building a network of supporters, and designing a problem-solving product or service. Entrepreneur Revolution is a perfect resource for businesspeople seeking real-world case studies and actionable insights.

Notable quote: “The key to success in business is not just about having a good idea, but also about having the right mindset, skills, and resources to turn that idea into a successful enterprise.”

Get Entrepreneur Revolution.

11. The Finance Curse: How Global Finance is Making Us All Poorer by Nicholas Shaxson

The Finance Curse is a striking and illuminating critique of the global banking system. According to Shaxson, expanding the financial industry has several negative repercussions, including economic insecurity, inequality, and hollowing out democratic institutions.

The author demonstrates his claim using various examples, ranging from the 2008 financial crisis to multinational firms’ tax-evading tactics. While the book critiques global banking’s current status, Shaxson offers practical reform alternatives.

Notable quote: “We need to start thinking about finance in a new way, not just as a tool for generating wealth, but to create value for society as a whole.”

Buy The Finance Curse.

12. Prosperity: Better Business Makes the Greater Good by Colin Mayer

Colin Mayer’s Prosperity pushes readers to reconsider the purpose of business and the role of firms in society. Mayer contends that the current shareholder capitalism model is destructive to society and unsustainable in the long run. The reason for his stance is the emphasis on short-term profits over long-term sustainability and social responsibility.

Mayer is a proponent of a new corporate governance model that prioritizes the interests of all stakeholders, including employees, consumers, and communities. The book encourages businesses to pursue long-term goals that benefit society. Through case studies and analysis, Mayer provides practical insights into how firms can migrate to this new paradigm. He also discusses how to achieve a more profitable and sustainable future.

Notable quote: “We need a new kind of capitalism, one that prioritizes purpose over profit and values long-term sustainability over short-term gains.”

Read Prosperity.

13. The Writing on the Wall: China And The West In The 21st Century by Will Hutton

Will Hutton’s The Writing on the Wall is an interesting and thought-provoking analysis of the history of debt and its impact on society. According to Hutton, debt has been essential in molding human history from ancient times to today. He investigates the sources and effects of debt, especially on economic and political systems.

Hutton also examines how humans used debt to oppress communities, particularly during colonialism and slavery. The book is well-researched and fascinating, giving readers a new viewpoint on an often-overlooked issue. Folks interested in the history of finance and economics need to read The Writing on the Wall.

Notable quote: “The morality of revolution—that the end justifies the means—becomes a morality that justifies corruption.”

Read The Writing on the Wall.

14. Redesigning Work: How to Transform Your Organization and Make Hybrid Work for Everyone by Lynda Gratton

Lynda Gratton’s Redesigning Work is a topical and significant book covering hybrid labor’s opportunities and problems. Gratton stresses how the pandemic has altered how we work. Hence, firms must reinvent their systems and procedures to create a more inclusive and sustainable workplace.

Redesigning Work offers practical recommendations and case studies demonstrating how organizations may leverage hybrid work. In addition, the book addresses collaboration, communication, and staff well-being problems.

Notable quote: “The pandemic has forced us to recognize that work can be done differently and that people need more flexibility and autonomy in their jobs.”

Buy Redesigning Work.

15. First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman

First, Break All the Rules is a game-changing book that questions standard management techniques and offers a fresh viewpoint on establishing a successful team. The book is one of the most disruptive British business management books. Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman argue that the finest managers focus on individual talents rather than correcting deficiencies. Such managers concentrate on building a workplace culture that empowers and motivates employees.

Buckingham and Coffman employ research and case studies to highlight how successful management techniques may have a revolutionary impact on organizations. First, Break All the Rules is a must read for managers who want to create a more productive and fulfilling workplace.

Notable quote: “Talent is the multiplier. The more energy and attention you invest in it, the greater the yield. The time you spend with your best is, quite simply, your most productive time.”

Buy First, Break All the Rules.

16. Black Box Thinking: The Surprising Truth About Success by Matthew Syed

Matthew Syed’s Black Box Thinking explores learning from failure and how it can lead to growth, progress, and innovation. The book draws its title from the popular aviation industry practice where experts analyze plane crashes by vetting black box flight recorders. This practice helps identify mistakes and prevent future accidents.

In Black Box Thinking, Syed argues that corporations across all fields should adopt a similar approach. This book has sold an estimated 500,000 copies since its publication in 2015. Black Box Thinking has many useful bits of info, and readers will take many lessons from the pages.

Notable quote: “Learning from failure expresses a profound moral purpose. It is about saving, sustaining, and enhancing human life.”

Get Black Box Thinking.

17. Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek

Simon Sinek is a British-American author and speaker. Published in 2009, his book Start with Why has sold over two million copies worldwide. The main premise is successful leaders and organizations focus on the fundamental question of why they do what they do. This method contrasts with focusing on the “what” or “how” of the business. By answering the right questions, companies will distinguish themselves from competitors. In addition, the author expands on the Golden Circle concept. This visual model shows how great organizations inspire action by starting with their core purpose.

Start with Why has many examples to back its points. The book draws on the experiences of influential individuals and well-known companies, including Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and Southwest Airlines. Sinek argues that these leaders and organizations effectively communicate their “why,” leading to their resounding success.

Notable quote: “The Wright brothers, Apple, and Martin Luther King stand out among their peers. They are members of a very select group of leaders who do something very, very special. They inspire us.”

Buy Start with Why.

18. Book of Branding: A Guide to Creating Brand Identity for Startups and Beyond by Radim Malinic

Radim Malinic’s Book of Branding is an indispensable resource for businesspeople involved in creating a brand identity. Malinic is a graphic designer and creative director with extensive industry knowledge and expertise. He employs these skills to demystify the intricacies of branding.

This book offers valuable insights and practical advice to startup owners and creators. Malinic begins with the importance of understanding the core purpose and values behind a brand. The author also highlights how a strong brand strategy is the foundation for successful branding efforts. The book then delves into the visual aspects of branding. Beyond design, Book of Branding also discusses the role of storytelling in branding.

Book of Branding will help beginners deepen their understanding of branding. The book will also help seasoned professionals to create compelling brand identities.

Notable quote: “No brand in history has been created in a vacuum—it takes time to consider, validate, create, reflect, amend and apply the perfect identity for each project.”

Get Book of Branding.

19. Ogilvy on Advertising by David Ogilvy

David Ogilvy is a household name in marketing and advertisement. The famous copywriter’s revolutionary work Ogilvy on Advertising is one of the most influential in the industry.

Ogilvy on Advertising shares how research helps develop effective advertising campaigns. The book also teaches how to understand the target audience and craft impactful headlines for them. Additionally, the author discusses the need for clear, compelling, and persuasive communication. The book contains anecdotes from Ogilvy’s own successful campaigns. These stories serve as real-world examples and insights to guide readers.

The book provides timeless advice for hacking the dynamic advertisement industry. Ogilvy on Advertising is a must-read for business owners and salespeople.

Notable quote: “It takes a big idea to attract the attention of consumers and get them to buy your product. Unless your advertising contains a big idea, it will pass like a ship in the night.”

Buy Ogilvy on Advertising.


The world of British business has countless opportunities and challenges. Business books can provide valuable insights into leveraging both sides of the coin. The United Kingdom has produced many influential and inspiring business books. Memoirs of successful entrepreneurs like Richard Branson and James Caan give you insights into practical branding. Likewise, personal development guides by Lucy Humberstone and Stephen Covey can help you grow.

Female leaders like Karren Brady have also contributed to the discourse. These women provide valuable insights and role models for women in business. Whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur or an experienced business leader, these books offer a wealth of information and guidance to help you achieve your goals.

Next up, check out our lists of other business books, such as business writing books, business books, entrepreneur books, and small business books.

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FAQ: British business books

Here are some frequently asked questions about British business books.

What are British business books?

British business books are about important business, entrepreneurship, and personal development subjects. These works are from the most successful and influential British entrepreneurs and business leaders. British business books teach entrepreneurial strategies and help individuals and organizations succeed in the business world.

What are the best British business books?

Here are some of the best British business books:

  • Prosperity by Colin Mayer
  • Like A Virgin by Richard Branson
  • Shoemaker by Joe Foster
  • Ogilvy on Advertising by David Ogilvy
  • Start with Why by Simon Sinek

These books give you valuable insights into the mind of some of the most outstanding British businesspeople.

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